Windsor’s newest downtown addition isn’t a cleverly themed restaurant, clothing boutique or jewelry shop, but it did perfectly coincide with this weekend’s USA Pro Challenge bike race.
You’ve probably seen the carefully crafted metal contraption if you’ve ventured to the intersection of 5th and Main streets any time in the past couple months. The Downtown Development Authority earlier this year installed a clever, fire-engine red bike rack in front of the House of Windsor, and though many consider it art, DDA members are urging people to use it for its intended purpose — to lock up your two-wheeled ride.
With a price tag under $500, DDA President Bob Winter said it’s just another step in making the area shine — just in time for the bike race — and bring Windsor to the levels of other nearby communities that put an emphasis on cycling and alternative transportation.
“Our goal is to make downtown more pedestrian friendly and bike friendly,” he said. “We thought, ‘What better way than have a rack right there on 5th and Main that looks like a bike?’ ”
So far, the community reception has been positive, Winter said, adding that many people commend the board for the new art work and appear unsure whether they can lock their bike to it.
“That’s what it’s for,” he laughed, adding he’s seen a bike chained to it a time or two, but usually it stands alone. “It could be art, but it’s also practical.”
The unique addition came from Wisconsin-based Madrax though a board member actually picked it up and drove it to Windsor while on a vacation to cut down on shipping costs. Winter said the DDA is working to make the themed racks an integral part of the community, potentially with another on 5th Street and even down on 4th Street.
“It was part of our initial plan to do that sort of thing,” he said. “We’ve had such a good response, we’re going to continue to do that as funds allow. That will probably be one of our priorities in 2014.”